Thought I’d be back live in the hosting chair next Friday. But someone took some vacation days so I will tape a new episode to air next Friday.
Vanier Cup is set for Friday night in BC Place. Laval vs McMaster. Those 2 semi finals ended up as yawners. Close in the start of 1st quarter then they pulled away. Canadian Football in a dome never seems right. No weather? Might as well watch Arena Football.
Hopefully a good crowd shows up in Vancouver. If the BC Lions get to the Grey Cup next weekend then that will overshadow the CIS. That’s where piggybacking on the CFL hurts. If the home team makes it in then it’s a week of wall to wall Lions coverage. Even though it’s the Vanier Cup that there are tonne of tickets available.
Struggled to an 8-8 record with NFL picks. I did say the AFC West games could be a coin flip. Just chose the wrong side for those ones and it steamrolled from there. Eagles/Ravens/Bills horrible performances didn’t help either.
But my fantasy team won, which was a blowout. My QB is Aaron Rodgers and I already had the game won by Sunday night. Final score was 129-63 and I’m now tied for 1st overall at 7-2 with the NB Destroyers. This particular CBS Fantasy League was created by a fellow blogger in New Brunswick. The Canadian Sports Media blog.
Back from Toronto. Train ride was nice. Since I don’t have a car I usually hop on the Megabus from Kingston to Toronto. Bus station is near my place which makes it easy. Since you probably don’t know, Kingston is the one mandatory stop on the Toronto-Montreal bus route.
Every bus has to stop here for 20 minutes or so. I took the bus Saturday morning and we even had a separate one for Kingston-Toronto and didn’t have to hop on one that was coming from Montreal.
Hadn’t taken VIA Rail before and it seemed to be in between bus and a flight. Like a plane there is assigned seats, a ‘gate’ you go through to get to the train, person comes by with drinks/snacks. Now for a trip of less than 3 hours it didn’t seem that much different. Other than possible snacks you could purchase during the trip. One good part is no worries about traffic delays like taking the 401.
Traveling by bus you are all on the same boat. Business Class on the train from what I’ve read is a better bet for longer train rides. More room and meals included even with wine. Just hope the people on your train can handle their alcohol, that could end badly.
Cost wise bus is lower of course. Now only reason I took the train for once was finding a cheap rate through their website. Right now it doesn’t list what I saw since there is a 50% off sale.
That page when working had tickets for $33 instead of the usual price which was almost $100. Now the catch was it was only certain routes and certain times. Only Toronto-Kingston train was 6am or 12pm on the day I was looking at. Took the noon hour one which worked out well but if you needed a certain day/time it wouldn’t work out.
I can say prices in general have gone down on VIA. Last time I had checked was a few years ago and it was something like $170 or more for a train on the same route. When I can ride the bus for $30 it didn’t make sense. Especially when it’s economy class we’re talking about.
So at least they’re more reasonable than those days.
Price wise even that wasn’t as bad as trying to fly out of Kingston Airport. Hardly anyone around here uses Norman Rogers Airport. They either drive to Toronto or Ottawa and fly out. Prices for a short flight to those airports is crazy. Recently I just saw some ads on the local Kingston Transit buses trying to sell people on using the Airport. Good luck.
As an example: Kingston to Moncton, New Brunswick. Where I’m planning on going next year for a specific reason. [Again that will make sense later in the month when I give details] I will use the same date to compare. We’ll use January 13th Kingston to Moncton. With transfers in Toronto then Halifax, Montreal or Ottawa. First the ‘class’ of the seat then the price.
Tango, $364. Tango Plus, $429. Latitude, $846. Executive Class Lowest, $632. Executive Class Flexible, $1415.
That’s the price of one way. So double that. Now why does nobody fly out of Kingston? To compare, Toronto to Moncton.
Tango, $174. Tango Plus, $239. Latitude, $614. Executive Class Lowest, $504. Executive Class Flexible, $1324.
Or also Ottawa to Moncton.
Tango, $149. Tango Plus, $214. Latitude, $652. Executive Class Lowest, $506. Executive Class Flexible, $1339.
You did read that right. For adding a 60 minute flight out of Kington Airport it DOUBLES the price of what you pay for Tango. And almost double as well for Tango Plus. Towards the higher end the price of Business Class travelers is pretty similar. But I’m betting most of you readers are not looking at throwing down $2600 for a flight inside of Canada.
And that’s why everyone I know around here either get a ride, take a train or catch a bus to Pearson or Ottawa Airport then fly out. Doesn’t make any sense to pay double just for the luxury of flying out of here. And if it’s 2 people traveling, or a family of four? No way you are paying those prices.
I recalled this article in the Whig Standard from a few months ago about Kingston Airport. Seems they know people go elsewhere, but can’t deal with the reason why. Or put their head in the sand on what the reason is.
He cited the recent example of an American sports organization that was arranging to send a delegation of 17 people here in June to scout a site for a sporting event.
When the group learned the only flight to Kingston would go through Toronto, they declined and instead will fly into Ottawa and take a bus from there.
Toronto Pearson Airport, said Garrah, has become infamous for its delays.
“We need another terminal. We need to extend the runway. We need to offer travellers more choice,” he said.
Snow said a comprehensive business plan could point to expansion — or the status quo.
“I believe that with such an untapped market potential of 70% already flying, if we had the right-sized facility a good deal of those 70% would come back and begin and end their journey in Kingston,” he said.
Pointing out delays at Pearson made no sense. Whether you take a flight out of Kingston or not, you have to go through Pearson most of the time don’t you? So the same delay would affect you flying out of Norman Rogers.
Thankfully in the comments people point out the obvious reason ‘PRICES’. Whether the terminal is better doesn’t matter. Until the airlines make the prices reasonable they are not getting the business. Few people in comments even talk about driving to Syracuse when flying to the US to avoid those kind of charges.
Advertising is not working either since soon as you look at that sticker prices you will go elsewhere. Not there fault Air Canada puts the price that hight. And if the expansion doesn’t help lower the prices it is a waste of money.
Rant over for today.
Concert was great on Sunday afternoon. Will write more when I’m at a real computer.
Probably didn’t go well with NFL picks, have to over them. Ravens losing to Seattle and Arizona over Philly were 2 I don’t think many would’ve predicted.
Taking the train back to Kingston. First time on VIA Rail so I can compare it with Megabus. Planning on taking a longer train trip in spring. Which I will explain later in the month.
There are 2 versions of last night’s UFC to talk about. Fox and the international feed. Didn’t know Sportsnet had the other feed till partway through the hour.
Fox only had 1 fight and more importantly no clips of the other fights on the card. If you saw Fox you probably didn’t know there was an undercard. Which might’ve been fine if the main event hadn’t lasted 64 seconds. And this was the network decision.
International feed I saw showed Guida-Henderson which went 3 rounds. Some MMA people said that was best fight of the year so far. So nobody in the US watching saw it. They’ll fix that for future shows I’m sure. Make it a 2 hour broadcast and you have room for everything.
Off for now. Concert this afternoon then crash at hotel to watch football. And typing this on an iPod touch so not like I can write a very long post. Nfl picks were made a few days ago for those looking for that.
National Blog Posting Month continues. With my NFL picks out yesterday, continuing the daily blog posts for November. With time on my hands on a quiet midnight shift this week. This could be good timing with this person’s birthday being today, if Wikipedia is correct. Which you should always take with a grain of salt.
Since I work late nights and on the weekends I catch the late SportsCentre. Used to be the ‘2am SC [SportsCentre]’ but they recently pushed it up an hour to 1am/10pm Pacific most likely to be earlier on the West Coast. It is the same show you see on the Morning Loop on TSN.
This past Saturday/Sunday was the first weekend without Holly Horton in the anchor chair. She mentioned it on Twitter that Sunday night that she’s stepping back from full time. Myself and a few others retweeted it [that is a verb these days]. Also did it Monday morning which was Halloween for those who aren’t night owls and might’ve missed the news.
My last weekend shift doing the double-double with @bryanmudryk. Taking a step back, leaving full-time, doing the occasional freelance…Thank you to all my wonderful tweeps. I so love interacting with all of you. I’ll be seeing you 😉 #tsn
Double Double = Saturday/Sunday shift. Guessing Holly or Bryan came up with that and it stuck. Or maybe someone on the crew.
Not the first time the TSN gang has come up on the blog. Holly, Bryan and others appeared last December. “Which is longer, the bio of Mike Shanahan on the Redskins website or all of the TSN Sportscentre anchors combined?” Answer was of course, Mike’s. More words than when I put together all of the bios from the TSN website. If you thought he was full of himself you are correct.
When it comes to SportsCentre on overnight/mornings for those with a keen eye they shoot 2 different endings to the program. One you see vast majority of the time is the one where they say ‘good morning’ and introduce the top of the hour for those watching on the loop. I get home from work around 7:50am so I can see end of that hour then the show starts again at 8am. And that repeats throughout the morning.
The 2nd ending is the last show of the loop which a lot of people might not know about. Since it doesn’t lead into another episode of SC they shoot a different ending of the anchors wrapping up the show and signing off. During the week this doesn’t air till noon hour. Sunday mornings if you watch that might be the one time you see the ‘other ending’ since they have early morning programming with ‘The Reporters’ and ‘NFL Countdown’.
Also with those 2 endings I mentioned if you did watch the Morning Loop on October 31st you wouldn’t have known it was Holly’s last day at the end. Since the ending for the morning she just said Happy Halloween at the end. However, if you caught the last airing then Bryan and Holly did talk about it being their last SC together after 6 years.
Good luck to Holly and Happy Birthday as well if it is today. As I was writing this piece, I found a more reliable source of information on her. A Bell Media Press Release from 2004 on her joining TSN. I know, the Bell site keeps press releases from ’04? Since it helps me in this blog post I’m glad they did.
July 9, 2004
Holly Horton Joins SportsCentre as Toronto Anchor and Reporter
TORONTO (July 9, 2004) – TSN announced today the addition of Holly Horton as a new Toronto anchor and reporter for SportsCentre, the network’s flagship news and information program.
A native of Scarborough, Ont., Horton will make her SportsCentre debut on Friday, July 16. Horton’s responsibilities include anchoring the 2 a.m. ET weekend editions of the program, as well as reporting on sports stories from around the Toronto area.
Prior to joining TSN, Horton spent two years as sports director and sports anchor for Global Television in Lethbridge, Alta. (2002-2004).
And it does confirm she went to Western, “She also has a degree in Psychology from the University of Western Ontario.” Wonder if she’s thought about the psychological problems of some people on Twitter….. probably. Friends of the blog Toni Marie Wiseman and Jody Vance are on Twitter so I’m sure they’ve dealt with some strange posts.
Since my radio show is on Queen’s campus we have to mention the Queen’s/Western rivalry. Luckily I only do a show on campus, never went to university. I’d rather Queen’s win since I work on the football broadcasts but doesn’t have same connection to me as Bruins/Habs. Yates Cup on Saturday is Western vs McMaster. Mac beat Queen’s last Saturday so doesn’t matter much to me who wins.
I haven’t forgotten about Bryan Mudryk who joined her on weekends the last few years. Holly/Bryan made a great team on the weekend. My powers of internet Googling [again with strange words] found this article from September of 2004 when Bryan joined the channel. Didn’t know Bryan and Onrait are from the same place. Oh and the Leafs comment is funny.
‘Muddy’ flows east : Mudryk latest in a steady stream of Edmonton sportscasters to land in T.O.
By DAVE CAMERON — Edmonton Sun
He’s changed his address. He won’t be changing his stripes.
Bryan Mudryk may be among the latest sportscasters to be scooped from the Wild West of Edmonton to the Big Smoke of Toronto, but he promises he will never come back wearing a Mats Sundin sweater.
“I definitely won’t become a Leafs fan, I can tell you that much. I think I would get kicked out of my family. They warned me before I left: I come home a Leafs fan I’m out of the will,” laughed Mudryk, days after making his move from CFRN to TSN.
The 27-year-old has hit the ground running, anchoring SportsCentre on the weekends while living out of a hotel room, but he isn’t feeling like the little fish about to get swallowed up in the big pond.
He already made that jump. The kid from Boyle entered broadcast school at NAIT and moved to Edmonton at age 19. After stints in Lloydminster (“I did everything – anchor, weather, whatever.” And? “Oh yeah, the hog reports!”) and at A-Channel in Winnipeg, Mudryk landed back in the Big E.
“It was awesome working for CTV for the four years. I grew up watching that station. To be able to go back and work there was great. I’ll always be an Albertan at heart. That’s home but this is an amazing opportunity.
“Edmonton’s an outstanding sports town,” Mudryk said, trying to reason why this has become something of a farm team for the national sports networks. “(Fellow TSNer) Jay Onrait, him and I actually grew up in Boyle together. So it’s kind of neat that we’re back together.”
Besides the weekend anchor spot alongside Holly Horton that has him getting home – when he finds one – at 3 a.m., Mudryk will be doing assignments during the week. Which is how he got his rookie hazing.
“I walked in and the assignment guy was like, ‘Muddy, I hate to break it to you, but we’ve got a shoot for you at 10 a.m. Monday morning.’
“I said, ‘You’re messing with me, right?’ Like it was a big joke. ‘No seriously, you’re messing with me, right?’
“So I had a shoot the next morning. Four hours of sleep and back reporting. But I love it. It’s all good.”
From house hunting to going from eight-minute on-air segments to a 90-minute SportCentre, he’s learning his new environment from scratch.
“It’s the centre of the universe, apparently! This I know. But not much at all, to be honest.
“I know the traffic sucks.”
And nobody drives a pickup unless there’s a business logo on the doors.
“Yeah, it looked kind of funny when I was driving my tractor down the 401 the other day.”
But he’s already scheduled to be back home.
“I had Hodgkin’s (disease) when I was 17 and I had a relapse when I was 19. I was treated at the Cross Cancer Institute, but I’ve been doing a golf tournament back in Boyle every year for the last three years. And I’m still going to be flying home every year to do that. It’ll be June 24. We raise money for Cross.
“I said (to TSN), ‘I want to keep this going.’ And they said, ‘Absolutely. No worries.’
“So I’ll be back for that.”
But not wearing a Leafs sweater.
Now can I find an interview with Holly? Yes, I can. I told you it was a quiet week at work so after some searching I came across this. One for a column in Metro News from 2006 called “Celeb Beauty and Kitchens”. Thinking they’ll find it amusing I found it. And contains good gift ideas.
Holly Horton, co-host of SportsCentre, TSN’s flagship news and information program:
Q: What products make you look and feel good?
A: I am a product junkie! I’m always looking for that miracle product. I use Vaseline Intensive Care for my body. I’ve been using Vichy products for my face. I use Nivea Refreshing Cleansing Gel as a cleanser and to take off makeup from the broadcasts. Once a week, I use L’Oréal’s Refinish Microdermabrasion to buff up my skin.
Q: Describe your style?
A: I like to think I strike a balance between following fashion trends and sticking to timeless, classic pieces. I like clean lines, especially for on air suits, and I love colour.
Q: How do you keep life in perspective?
A: Life can change on a dime so I try very hard not to take things for granted. My family and friends are the most important to me and they keep me grounded. My golden retriever is an amazing daily reminder to find joy in small things!
Q: How do you stay fit?
A: I’m a person who actually likes going to the gym. I recently had some sessions with a personal trainer and he stressed the value of doing exercises that benefit the entire body all at once.
Q: What are your healthy eating habits?
A: I try to stay informed about what to eat. I try to buy healthy options and I read a lot of labels. I try to eat every few hours and have protein at every meal.
That’s it for today. Never could confirm if it’s her birthday, however I’m sure we’ll find out through Twitter when I mention it. My birthday is next week so good luck to a fellow Scorpio. And she’s back in on SportsCentre on December 3rd and 4th. Bryan still in on the weekends which I’ll be watching during the cold months at work when it’s 4am on a Sunday morning. [If you ever work that hour you will know how quiet it is]
End with a quote I found online from a viewer while searching.
“Holly Horton is total pro, the best one they’ve got”
Day 6 of NaBloPoMo, with my NFL picks yesterday 9 games right on Sunday. Not too shabby. Some quick thoughts.
Miami not only winning but the Chiefs not showing up in a 31-3 loss. I’d say that’s horrible but that is the Colts. Who have seem to taken off the entire season, except for that weird Sunday night game they almost beat the Steelers. That might’ve been their chance to win a game this season. Yesterday the home crowd booed them and most were gone by the end of the game. Rightfully so. Remember they are hosting the Super Bowl in February. To see a team that bad with hosting the big game in the new year has got to be annoying.
Redskins lost again, with those Quarterbacks it’s to be expected.
My Ravens pick pulled through at the very end. If you didn’t see that game the Baltimore players dropped a few passed on that last drive that should’ve been caught. Luckily the last guy did catch the TD pass for the win.
Eli beats the Patriots at the end of a 4th quarter just like the Super Bowl. Jets beat the Bills. Main question today might be who is the best team in the AFC. I don’t know. No one is a clear choice like Green Bay is in the NFC.
That’s it for today. Tomorrow I suppose I will talk the Monday Night game, hope something happens in that one.
Day 5 of doing a blog every day, today the usual NFL picks. Which I’ll have to push up with Thursday Night Football coming. Or maybe I’ll just pick that game and save the rest of these long posts for the weekend.
Queen’s lost to McMaster Saturday afternoon, in a game that was not close. 40-13 and the game was worse than the score indicates. Golden Gaels threw 6 INT in the 1st half, 5 to the same guy. Considering that 40 points is kind of low. Next Football broadcast Labour Day 2012. Hockey/Basketball/Volleyball in January so there is live sports on CFRC after the holidays.
Onto the NFL. Rebounded with 9-4 record last week.
Seattle 2-5 (Road: 1-3) at Dallas 3-4 (Home: 2-1)
My pick of the Cowboys last week didn’t quite work. Thanks for not showing up. Seattle is bad, yet only 1 game behind Dallas in wins. Dallas to win this.
Atlanta 4-3 (Road: 2-2) at Indianapolis 0-8 (Home: 0-3)
Nothing else to say.
NY Jets 4-3 (Road: 0-3) at Buffalo 5-2 (Home: 4-0)
Picked Buffalo to beat my team the Redskins. I was REALLY glad not to buy tickets for that with the Skins performance. Wow.
Cleveland 3-4 (Road: 1-2) at Houston 5-3 (Home: 3-1)
Houston beating teams without having Andre Johnson in the lineup is a sign maybe they really have gotten better. 1st round exit for them in the playoffs, but this team has never been to the post-season so that’s an improvement.
San Francisco 6-1 (Road: 3-0) at Washington 3-4 (Home: 2-1)
Caroline Frolic’s 49ers to go 7-1 and for all intents and purposes clinching the division. Other NFC West teams are quite bad, and how many times has San Fran played in the division this season? Zero. 6-1 without games against the Rams/Seahawks/Cardinals. That playoff race is over.
Tampa Bay 4-3 (Road: 1-1) at New Orleans 5-3 (Home: 3-0)
Rams beat the Saints last week. Weird.
Miami 0-7 (Road: 0-4) at Kansas City 4-3 (Home: 2-1)
How Kansas City has come back from the brink at 0-3 I don’t know. Wasn’t 0-3 in close games they were getting blown out. Dolphins are 0-7 not as bad as Indy. Miami has some close losses.
Cincinnati 5-2 (Road: 3-1) at Tennessee 4-3 (Home: 3-1)
2 teams I am not sold on. Cincinnati has a good defense so I’ll go with that.
Denver 2-5 (Road: 1-2) at Oakland 4-3 (Home: 2-2)
Tebow looked atrocious. His problem is where he was drafted. 1st Round which never should have happened. He is someone who needed to learn for 2-3 seasons at least. Even then I don’t know if he would be an average QB. Coach who drafted him is gone and new people are in. So with the price of a 1st Round pick they throw him out there to see what he is. Wasn’t pretty.
NY Giants 5-2 (Road: 2-1) at New England 5-2 (Home: 3-0)
Super Bowl rematch. I wanted Pats to win that one since I am sick of the 72 Dolphins. That team is known for being undefeated but that’s it. Even that year they weren’t viewed as great. How do I know? Super Bowl that year was Redskins/Dolphins and Washington was the betting favorite. A Miami team without a loss, and people thought the Skins were better. Imagine that.
After losing last week I’d see Pats coming back. They don’t lose 2 games in a row very often.
St. Louis 1-6 (Road: 0-3) at Arizona 1-6 (Home: 1-2)
Remember what I said about the NFC West. Here is the proof.
Green Bay 7-0 (Road: 4-0) at San Diego 4-3 (Home: 3-0)
San Diego after choking that game away still might be smarting from that.
Sunday Night, Baltimore 5-2 (Road: 1-2) at Pittsburgh 6-2 (Home: 4-0)
Picked them in Week 1 so might as well try again.
Monday Night, Chicago 4-3 (Road: 1-2) at Philadelphia 3-4 (Home: 1-2)
Chicago handled Vick last season. That’s all I got.